Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Tuesday's Top Three

Happy Tuesday, Girls!!  I got a sweet e-mail from a girl last week.  She (and her hubby) recently moved a long way away from family.  She was asking for any suggestions on getting plugged in to a new community.  (I think she'd read that Tab and I are from Missouri/Arkansas, but we're clearly doing our best to make Texas home for us and our family.)  Her e-mail really got me thinking!!  I can look back and give a couple GREAT ideas for things we did that worked well!  And...I have a couple things we did that did NOT work!  

So...my Tuesday's Top Three is all about how to make a new city "home"...
#1 Get involved in a group

For Tab and us, that was a church group.  We were HORRIBLE at this when we first got married.  We lived in Arlington, TX and knew we wouldn't be there for long.  Again, I'll say it.  We were horrible at this for the first 8 months.  I had to finish my student teaching and could only do it in Arlington.  (Arlington was WAY too big city for us!  ha!)  That's the reason we were there.  We knew as soon as I was finished we wanted to move.  Once we moved to McKinney, we instantly started trying churches out and found a BFG (Sunday School class) that we loved.  The couples in there were ALL our age and everyone was in the same stage of life.  So much fun!  

Maybe you need to find a church group too!  Or maybe you need to join a gym or a running club?  The point is find something you're interested in and be a part of a group!

(Okay...that picture!  I searched on FB for pictures that were from WAY back when.  Tab is not on FB and therefore he is in NO pictures!!  This is the only one I could find from our days in Arlington.  Tab and I traveled back to Jonesboro, AR, for a football game.)

These were some of the girls in our BFG.  They were JUST what I needed during that time!  LOVE these girls!!  Whitney (on the left) had seriously just had a baby like three days before this picture!  I'm not even kidding!  Three days after having a baby...I was curled up in bed.

#2 Stay in Town

Our first year of marriage, Tab and I did a lot of traveling.  We went to visit my family.  We went to visit his family.  We went to visit college friends.  We went all over.  Now...don't get me wrong.  You should totally travel and have fun.  BUT...it was hard for us to get involved with a church and a group when we were gone all the time.  We decided one day that this was our new home and we needed to be here the majority of our time.  I think newly married couples think if they have an extra day or two off they should go visit family.  Maybe you should!  But...you might need to stay in town and hang out with new friends. 

#3 Take the Initiative

I get it.  You're new and you feel awkward (and nervous) about inviting a couple or a new friend to do something.  You have to get over it.  You guys (if it's a couple thing) or you (if just girls) have to get over that nervous feeling and YOU do the inviting.  You take the initiative and have a new couple over for dinner.  You take the initiative and invite a new girlfriend to go shopping.  Sometimes being new we tend to wait for an invitation and that shouldn't be the case.  You do the inviting!!

My kiddos were born and instantly blessed with some GREAT friends!!

#4 It takes TIME

Now I can say with 100% certainty that I have some of the best girlfriends EVER!!  But it took time.  Don't be discouraged.  In order to be super comfortable with friends, you have to REALLY know them and that simply takes time. It also takes everyone being REAL.

Bowen and I posing with the girls :)  haha!!  Get it?

Okay...hope this helps someone!!  Like I said, Tab and I did some things VERY well, but it took us a while to realize there were some things we needed to change.  Good luck to all of you in a new place!!  Here's to meeting new GREAT friends!!

15 comments:

Mix and Match Mama said...

I thought all of your advice was really good but my favorite piece of advice...was staying in town! That is such great advice! And by the way...that pic of my hair straight was when you told me never to do that again (you insisted) and I haven't since then! Ha!

Sheaffer {Pinterest Told Me To} said...

Great advice! Taking the initiative is so important. Loved seeing all the pics!

Narci said...

Such good advice and so true! I really love this post!!

kimm atwood said...

Love it ! Great tips!!!

Slightly Askew Designs said...

Great post!!! and love that out of all the pics of us together you picked the one where I'm wearing a mustard costume. hahaha Today is NOT my most flattering day on the internet (monkey shirt and sweats AND a mustard costume). :)

Katie Sullivan said...

Hoping to get to know all of you wonderful girls more! Missed you at Andreas Sunday!

Rachel - Floral and Fudge said...

Loved this! I have moved 3 times in 5 years and it's hard to make friends post-college. I really agree about taking the initiative. I need to be the inviter more often :)

Elaine said...

We've moved so often that it is so hard to find friends and to find good friends! Once I finally started in Indiana, we moved to Oklahoma. We've been here three years now, and we were definitely better about making friends here, although I miss having super close girl friends that are together all the time! Loved your advice!

Liz said...

Such good advice! So so true!

Crystal McDonald said...

Perfect post. Thank you Lord for this message. Need to keep my behind in town! We don't have a free weekend for months. Thank you for this!

Charla Liedahl said...

Great advice! My hubby and I have been married 10 years and have 2 kids and we have had THREE corporate moves in 10 years. One completely across the country! I have a few little things to add (if anyone else is reading the comments.) 1) Don't compare the places you've lived and the people in each of those places. Look for the silver lining, even when it's hard. 2) Carry your good memories with you, but DON'T hoard them so tightly that you aren't willing to make new memories. 3)Don't wish for what was, look forward to what's in front of you. This was great, Erika! I love your blog and your cute family! If we ever move to the DFW area (you just never know!) I'll be sure to reach out!

Christy @ The Swafford Spot said...

I totally agree with all of your advice. My husband and I just decided to not drive to visit family so much. I feel guilty but reading your post helps me to know we've made the right decision.

Jamie {the celebrating momma} said...

I needed this more than you could possibly know!! :)

Kylie McGraw said...

I love this post! I just moved to a new city and I'm all on my own here...so I'm currently looking for the right church for me and talking to everyone in my classes at the gym;) Thanks for the tips!

Liz Rotz said...

Love this post! We still live where we grew up, but I think this advice is great for anyone in any place!